Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Spring Sipp & Gin Cocktail!

We are so very pleased to team up with Sipp Organic Soda once again! Cheers!

I am a huge fan of Sipp Organic soda!  It's what I buy for my kiddos and for drinkies.  Great ingredients and none of the stuff I don't want for!  This weekend we celebrated our first picnic outside of the season.  The kids had these cocktails sans the gin, of course!

Ingredients - 

Sipp Organic Soda - Summer Pear flavor
Mint Leaves - fresh and organic
Gin - we like small batch and handcrafted!

Muddle small mint leaf and small slice of cucumber in shaker glass.
Add one shot of Gin and 4 oz of Sipp and shake.
Strain into fresh glass of ice.
Top with mint leaf and cucumber slice!
Simple, fresh and light - Cheers!

Sipp Organic Soda is widely available at Target Stores!

Fresh Market, Whole Foods and now Moms Organic Market has as well!

For more locations see THIS!

Add lime for a new twist add lime and mint!

Weekends are made for fun!
We had fun making Mojo Berry Cocktails too - 
Vodka, blackberries, limes & Sipp Mojo Berry flavor!

My Notes:

Beach tote is from Anthropologie
Cocktail supplies from Wiliams Sonoma
I always use organic ingredients!
Picnic knife is Opinel

We had fun collaborating with Sipp Organic Soda on this cocktail post.  Opinions are my own.  I buy Sipp for my family whether sponsored or not! 

Monday, April 10, 2017

Blue & Blackberry Bramble!

Spring is here and we are in the mood berries, picnics and blooms!  We have done several crumble recipes but this one may be my favorite!  Wild blueberries, blackberries topped with lemon and mint - delightful!

Blueberries and Blackberries are the best! 

Ingredients - 

Wild Blueberries - 10 oz. frozen or fresh 
Blackberries - 20 oz. frozen or fresh
Lemon - small
Butter - 7 oz we use grassfed butter (a quality organic and/or grass fed butter)
Oats 1 1/2 cups - we use Irish Oats or Bobs Red Mill Organic Oats
Ceylon Cinnamon - 2 teas (or more)
Cardamon - 1 teas
Baking Powder - Non-GMO and no aluminum - 1 teas
Flour 1 cup - we use oat flour (it's gluten free)
4 oz Muscavodo Sugar
2 tablespoon Maple Syrup
a few mint leaves to top fruit

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Take a 10 iron skillet and pour blueberries and blackberries on the bottom.  
Squeeze the juice of fresh lemon all over the fruit.
Add a couple small mint leaves on top. Pinch in your fingers before to release the flavor
Mix your spices, butter, oats and flour together and sprinkle entire batch of batter on top.

Bake for 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Enjoy hot or cold with coffee or milk.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Best Meatloaf Ever!

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Around here meatloaf is for rainy winter and early spring days.  A really good meatloaf is the ultimate comfort food.  I have to say though, I think meatloaf gets a bad wrap and with some of the meatloaves I have tasted, I understand why.  Every meatloaf I have had other than my mothers has been bland, dry and quite frankly - inedible.

My mom's meatloaf is the only meatloaf I have ever liked and this one comes super close, if I do say so myself!  The next rainy day or Sunday afternoon dinner give meatloaf another try! 

Ingredients - 

1 pound of grass fed beef or buffalo meat
1 egg
1 small yellow onion
2  garlic cloves
2 slices of bread - use great bread for this!
1 tbs of ground flax seeds (do not substitute the flax entirely for the bread. Trust me on this one)
2 oz. Worcestershire sauce
 6 oz tomato sauce
1 heaping tablespoon of real mustard (I use a great one from France)
1 tbs of Italian Seasoning
2 teas of fresh ground pepper
1 teas of sea salt or Celtic salt

Rosemary sprig for topping
2 tbs of tomato sauce for topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Toast your bread slices and allow to dry until hard. Chop finely.
Mince the garlic cloves
Dice the onion

In mixing bowl add meat, egg, bread crumbs, tomato sauce, spices and Worcestershire sauce

Mix well.
If at all dry add a dash of tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce then mix again
Place in cast iron skillet or pan (I do not use a loaf pan!)
Form the meat into a loaf shape and add toppings - tomato sauce, spices and rosemary sprig
We also always chop fresh potatoes and carrots and place around the meat.
It all cooks and is done at the same time and is delicious! 

Bake for 40 minutes or until done.
Cool 10 minutes and enjoy!

We love this meatloaf with garlicky green beans!

My Notes:

Do not and I repeat do not substitute flax seeds for the entire bread called for.  Just because ground flax looks like maybe it could work as a bread crumb.  It does not work.  Please trust me on this.

I use organic ingredients, grass fed meats and always Non-GMO foods 

Yes, I'm obsessed with cooking in cast iron.

When my kids were small and a bit pickier on the foods they ate I would add a 1/2 cup of blended carrots to this.

I am absolutely baffled as to why anyone would add sugar to meatloaf.  The America diet has enough sugar.  Please do not add sugar to your meat! 

And milk. Milk to meatloaf? Um...no. Just no.

This is delicious, but not a sponsored post.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Seedling Colour the Galaxy Ball Giveaway! #SeedlingStory

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Today's post is sponsored by Seedling! Yay!

The Seedling Colour the Galaxy Ball in absolutely out-of-this-WORLD!  We just love it!

If you follow us on Instagram you already know we just love Seedling craft kits!  
I buy for my kids and I buy for gifts (lucky kids)!   
The Seedling Galaxy Ball comes with it's own colorful markers but you can feel free to add your own too - they all work! 

We added our own markers from OOLY for more color options!

My Notes:

Seeding has the best gifts for kids! And is my go-to gift buying site!

Nordstrom usually carries Seedling party gifts and goodies.  I always feel like I hit the jack pot when I find them - bouncy balls, spinning tops, masks, wands, gliders - you name it! Pure happiness! 

One of the options in the giveaway is to sign up for Seedling emails.  They have awesome specials and I highly recommend!  

Rocket Rainbow tee is from Mini Boden!

Colorful bins & rainbow pendant is from The Land of Nod

Just so you know, the Galaxy ball is awesome and bounces super high.  So you also know...your dog my go bonkers and want it bad.
And so you further now...the ball will pop if your new rescue dog decides to do this. 


We have one Colour the Galaxy Ball to giveaway! Yay!  Prize is for US residents only please. Prize is shipped via Seedling.  We are not responsible for shipping, use or if your kiddo suddenly wants to be an astronaut nor are we responsible if you color the ball during nap time and have to buy little one a new one! 

Please note - you need your own ball pump for this craft.  We bought ours off Amazon 
(this is not an affiliate link).

Giveaway entries are easy - do as many or little as you like! The more you enter, the more you are entered! ;P

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We partnered with Seedling for this blog post. Opinions are always my own - always!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Good Food Made Simple! #goodfoodmadesimple #spon

Thank you for stopping by little island studios, please subscribe by email to follow along in family fun!

This is a collaboration with Good Food Made Simple

Good Food Made Simple uses organic and non-GMO foods as often as possible, cage free eggs, antibiotic and nitrate-free meats, real cheese (makes you wonder what other companies use?!) and you won't find artificial colors, preservatives, flavors sweetness nor hydrogenated oils!  Good food, made simply.  Busy days shouldn't be complicated when it comes to cooking and eating real food.

This hatch chile mac is spicy and oh SO delicious!  We added a bit of sparkling water and sat down to read our new book!  I simply love taking a break mid-day and skip the cooking. Yay me! 

Little one loved the bolognese and called it spaghetti mac!  This is a great compliment folks, as his first choice for any meal is mac and cheese! *sigh*

We pick up our Good Food Made Simple meals at Target!

This post is in collaboration with Mambo Sprouts and Good Food Made Simple.  Opinions are my own.  Yes...SO good! 

Eating Clean, Barlean's & Moroccan Chickpea Skillet Pizza!

Today's delicious post is in collaboration with Barleans and Amie Valpone, author of Eating Clean and The Healthy Apple! #EatingCleanwithBarleans

Health and food go hand-in-hand.  Amie Valpone, author of Eating Clean Cookbook and Barlean's healthy food are a great way to get your body going in the right direction!  We love Barlean's products - certified organic, gluten free, Non-GMO, unrefined and a great company!
Flax oil should be in everyones diet in my opinion.  Two tablespoons of ground flax seed is a great place to start.  In this skillet pizza we made today, we used Barlean's Flax Oil in part replacing the olive oil.  And for the Skillet Pizza we sprinkled forth-flax on top of the tomato sauce.

If you follow us on InstaStories you know we made Eating Clean's Moroccan Chickpea Skillet Pizza and Carrot Cashew Herb Sauce!  Absolutely delicious.  My kids loved it!  And don't worry about how to store left-overs - you won't have any!

Blend your carrot cashew sauce to perfection! 

This is ready for the oven.  For the carrot cashew herb sauce I switched out the parsley and spinach for kale, garlic and cumin.  It calls for olive oil.  I used Barlean's flax oil for half of that.  This sauce, or I like to call my new favorite chip dip is absolutely delicious and now in my go-to entertaining recipes!
I've made skillet pizzas before, but this one is one of my favorites!  
Super healthy and clean - eat all you want!

Slides out of the iron skillet like a dream and ready to slice.  Eat with a fork and add a bit extra carrot cashew herb sauce to taste.  Enjoy! 

 My Notes:

Check this out for more than enough reasons to include Flax in your daily diet!

Giveaway -

We have a great giveaway - Barlean's Flax Oil and Forti-Flax and an Eating Clean Cookbook!  Prize is for US only please.  Cookbook is sponsored by me and will be shipped via Amazon.

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Yes, we are happy to be part of Barlean's blogging team.  We have followed The Healthy Apple on and off for years and respect her passion for wellness and food. 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Goodnight Everyone Picture Book Giveaway!

Thank you for stopping by little island studios, please subscribe by email to follow along in family fun!

Today's post is in collaboration with Candlewick Press! 

Goodnight Everyone by Chris Haughton is one of our favorite bedtime stories! Absolutely delightful tale of one little bear is not sleepy yet as the forest animals around her are settling down for the nights sleep.  Such a lovely and calming book for bedtime.  

The sun is setting, and everyone in the forest is getting sleepy. The mice, rabbits, and deer all give great big yawns as they snuggle up with their families for the night. But someone isn't sleepy just yet. Little Bear thinks he can stay awake a bit longer. Can he do it? Chris Haughton's bold and vibrant illustrations will captivate little ones eager to stay up just a teeny bit longer, while sweet depictions of animals cozying up in their beds for the night will soon have them yawning off to a dreamland of their own. - Candlewick Press

The art is happy, warm and inviting.

We have one hardcover copy for a giveaway!  Prize is for US residents only please.  Prize is shipped via publisher.  We are not responsible for shipping.

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This post is in collaboration with Candlewick Press. Opinions are my own.  We simply love Candlewick Press and Goodnight Everyone!

Monday, March 20, 2017

West Paw Design's QWIZL Doggie Toy Happiness!

We have happily teamed up with West Paw Design to celebrate their new dog toy - QWIZL made with Zogoflex material! Happy dogs everywhere! 

I would like to introduce Lola.  She is my daughter's rescue baby from Boulder, Colorado.  Lola is a blessing and fits into our family very nicely.  Lola has some separation anxiety that no one had wanted to help her through.  We did some research and found that a toy that mentally stimulates and keeps her busy was key to improvement in behavior.  We's are loving and highly suggest West Paw Design's Qwizl Toy!
Lola is perfect at camouflage!  

The QWIZL with ZogoFlex material is the perfect hide and treat toy for dogs! 

Zogoflex dog toys from West Paw Design are made in Bozeman,Montana are non-toxic, dishwasher safe, float for water play and backed by an awesome guarantee!

West Paw Design Doggie Toys are Lola approved! 

Lola just loves the DASH Frisbee! 
(Excuse the unpacking mess! )

We are HUGE fans of West Paw Designs!  The Whole Foods in Boulder carries most of them and that is how we were introduced.  Check out all of West Paw Design's toys for doggies and kitties! 

May we suggest the DASH frisbee and the QWIZL Treat Toy!  She truly loves and plays with them all...but these two are her most favorites!

Follow us on Instagram and don't forget to check out our InstaStories
 for daily fun with Lola! 

We are collaborating with West Paw Design.  Opinions are our own.  And yes, we simply love these doggie toys - Just ask Lola! 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

SING Blu-Ray Special Edition Giveaway! #SINGmovie #SINGAway #spon

We have happily teamed up with Illumination to bring you a SING Blu-Ray Giveaway! Enjoy! 

SING Special Edition is available with 3 New Mini-Movies on March 21 – just in time for Friday Family Movie Night!

From Illumination Entertainment, the studio that brought you THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS comes an animated comedy about finding the music that lives inside all of us. 

If you follow us on Instagram and our InstaStories you know that Friday night family movie this week was SING!  We loved it and can't stop - SINGING!  

SING stars Matthew McConaughey as Buster Moon, an eternally optimistic koala who puts on the world’s greatest singing competition to save his crumbling theater; winner Reese Witherspoon as Rosita, an overworked and underappreciated mother of 25 piglets desperate to unleash her inner diva; Scarlett Johansson as Ash, a punk rock porcupine with a beautiful voice behind her prickly exterior; and Taron Egerton as Johnny, a young gangster gorilla looking to break free of his family’s felonies.
SING is the musical comedy event of the year!

Love this video with Reese Witherspoon taking about motherhood and SING! 

My Notes:

Moms, so that you know - the very first preview on the Blu-Ray is an advertisement for the new Fifty Shades of Grey movie.  Honestly, I have NO idea why a clearly rated R movie is advertised on a PG animated movie for kids.  We immediately skipped it and went right for the movie.  Thought you should know in case you thought of putting movie on and leaving room.

The movie has funny laugh out loud parts, however is geared toward younger kids (ie...not my teenager)

My kiddo absolutely loved it and has been singing since.  He found a microphone is his play bin and has been running around singing! 

My favorite part is the mom pig, played by Reece Witherspoon and her 25 kids! 

The Blu-Ray comes with 3 mini-movies that are all very funny! 
 Our favorite it Gunter Babysits!  


We have one blu-ray copy to giveaway!  Enter as many times as you like.  Winner will be emailed.  Giveaway is for US residents only please.  Prize is shipped via studio.  We are not responsible for shipping, use or if your kids won't stop singing! Good luck!

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We happily collaborated with

Sunday, March 5, 2017

B Corporations - People Using Business As A Force For Good!

Thank you for stopping by little island studios, please subscribe by email to follow along in family fun!

We are so excited to partner with Stonyfield - now part of B Corp - Business as a force for good!

Shop like you mean it.  Where and what you spend your money on is more important now than ever.  So when we head to the market - we shop like we mean it.   Stonyfield has never lost sight of their original mission, of healthy people, healthy food, healthy planet and healthy business. Therefore, it was only fitting that they become a certified B Corporation!  We are honored to be a part of the Stonyfield blogging team and their commitment to the environment and healthy futures! 

Today, there is a growing community of more than 1,600 Certified B Corps from 42 countries and over 120 industries working together toward 1 unifying goal: to redefine success in business. B Corps are better companies – better for workers, better for communities and better for the environment. 

The B Corp movement is one of the most important of our lifetime, built on the simple fact that business impacts and serves more than just shareholders—it has an equal responsibility to the community and to the planet.Rose Marcario, CEO of Patagonia
Certified B Corporations redefine success in business.
Individually, B Corps meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability and aspire to use the power of markets to solve social and environmental problems. 
Collectively, B Corps lead a growing global movement of people using business as a force for good. Through the power of their collective voice, one day all companies will compete to be best for the world and society will enjoy a more shared and durable prosperity for all.

Some of our most favorite B Corporation Companies
Stonyfield Organics - Grass fed and organic amazing yogurts!
West Paw Designs - THE best doggie toys!
Purely Elizabeth - Granola (to top your Stonyfield yogurt) and other healthy foods
Method Cleaning - Cleaning Goodies
Puuka Teas - Organic and delicious
Preserve Products - Recycled Toothbrushes and more
King Arthur Flours - Unbleached and unbromated and never GMOs - Baking perfection!
Just to name a few!
We are happily a part of Stonyfield's blogging team. Opinions are my own. Shop like it matters!